Ed Flynn Calls for Ordinance to Regulate Short-Term Rental Platforms

Ed Flynn, candidate for Boston City Council District 2, announced this week that if elected he will file an ordinance related to the regulation of short-term rental platforms in the City of Boston. Flynn cited the City of Cambridge’s regulation as a starting point; however, Boston must look to improve upon their ordinance to ensure that large corporations are not depleting our housing stock.

“After hearing from residents throughout the district, it has become clear to me that high concentrations of corporate, short term rentals are increasing costs and driving displacement in our neighborhoods. There are public safety and quality-of-life issues that must be addressed, as well,” said Flynn. “We must also focus on absentee landlords skirting the rooming house laws – essentially creating mini-hotels for profit. These actions gouge the rental market and create a shortage of rents that working people can afford.”

Flynn cited data compiled by the Alliance for Downtown Civic Organizations (ADCO), which concluded:

  • Chinatown is experiencing the most rapid AirBnB growth – three times that of Boston and 37 percent annual growth.
  • Boston’s ownership/listing concentration statistics nearly double those of New York and Washington, D.C.
  • The number of AirBnB units owned by multi-neighborhood hosts is almost four times the average for other major U.S. cities, stressing the residential fabric of our communities.

Flynn conveyed that he would partner with current City Councilors that have held hearings on short term rental platforms to find comprehensive ways to address this issue. In addition, Flynn would look at registration and inspection requirements for the city.

Flynn said, “If elected, it is my hope that this regulation will begin to alleviate our residents’s concerns regarding what these short-term rentals are doing to the rental market, the public safety aspect and quality of life issues that have arisen, and maintaining the residential feel of our neighborhoods.”

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